View Full Version : Water chlorination in the U.S.

10-24-2011, 09:28 PM
Is water chlorination mandatory in the United States, or mandatory in certain states, or every state can decide to chlorinate or not?

I just need a general idea about it.

10-24-2011, 09:33 PM
All municipal water supplies have to be sanitized in some way. Chlorination is the cheapest and so probably universal. There might me some other system in use somewhere, but I've not heard of it. Putting flouride in the water varies by region, but that's not as a sanitation thing. Some people are not on the municipal system, utilizing some combination of wells and or cysterns. That would be the owners' decision whether to chlorinate their water.

10-24-2011, 09:44 PM
I'm specifically interested in chlorination of municipal water to get the idea if there are areas in the U.S. (even if only on a county or a specific water system level) where they do not chlorinate water.

Just like I know they fluoridate water in the U.S., but not in all states, right?

10-24-2011, 11:01 PM
OK; I've found out: like George said, methods other than chlorination are used here and there.

Drachen Jager
10-24-2011, 11:29 PM
I don't know about the US, but here in Canada there are lots of places where water isn't chlorinated because there isn't a need. Until very recently Vancouver used the water pure from the mountains. I suspect similar areas (Colorado perhaps) in the US have a similar situation. They simply monitor for bacteria and don't worry as long as it's below a certain level, but give 'boil water' advisories when it goes above a certain count.

Do a search for 'boil water advisory' and you come up with lots of places in the states issuing them. There wouldn't be a need to make the advisory if the water was properly chlorinated, so most of the places offering bwas probably do not treat their water.

10-24-2011, 11:32 PM
Now I can make a clever "this is because it's cold in Canada" comment. Wasn't aware of that, though.

10-24-2011, 11:34 PM
Calgary chlorinates. As does Winnipeg. It's colder in those places than in Vancouver. :tongue

10-24-2011, 11:41 PM
There are many places in the U.S. where the water is not treated, because it is from wells and tests as having no bacteria. The water must be tested regularly anyway. Water like that sometimes has rust inhibitors added, usually small amounts of caustic soda.

10-24-2011, 11:43 PM
When they say "private wells," can this mean a well that supplies several homes?

10-26-2011, 11:47 PM
all the houses in our area each have their own well. No one shares because you have to pay for the cost and maintenance of the well yourself. We all tap into the same reservoir of water, but each house has their own well. (This is not due to location as I live in the middle of a city and the neighbors are very close- it is an older area of town that used to be between suburbs before they grew together) In our area it is not common to chlorinate the water from the well. We soften and use a filter to purify out the rust particles, but not chlorine.

10-26-2011, 11:55 PM
OK, thanx, I was wondering why there are so many wells in the U.S...